Thursday 15 October 2015
Funding set aside for restoration of Old Municipal Chambers
Christchurch City Council will begin investigating options for the preservation of the treasured Old Municipal Chambers
building on Worcester Boulevard after $10 million was set aside for restoration work at today's Council meeting.
The Old Municipal Chambers was significantly damaged in the September 2010 and February 2011 earthquakes and its
condition is deteriorating.
The decision to set aside funding for the Old Municipal Chambers will ensure investigations can now begin into how the
building can be restored.
The current Long Term Plan allocates $40 million for the repair/rebuild of the Canterbury Provincial Chambers Buildings
in Durham Street, but no funding was set aside for the Old Municipal Chambers. The $40 million will now be split between
the two projects so there is $30 million for the Canterbury Provincial Chambers Buildings and $10 million for the Old
Over the coming months, a business plan that looks at potential uses for the Old Municipal Chambers building will be
developed, consultants will be engaged as required and priorities for preservation, repair and reconstruction will be
investigated. It is expected a report seeking approval to go ahead with the development of repair and strengthening
options for the Old Municipal Chambers will be presented to the Council for consideration in February next year.
Deputy Mayor Vicki Buck says the building is a significant landmark in the Central City and taking steps to preserve it
is vital because of the risk of further deterioration. "It's a prominent building in an area of the city where we're
seeing a lot of development occur so it's important we show we are progressing with the retention of a significant part
of our city's history."
Council Major Facilities Unit Manager Alistair McGuffie says thorough investigations will be carried out into the best
options for the building. "We know the building suffered significant damage in the earthquakes, but this will give us an
opportunity to find out more about the extent of the damage and how we can best protect this well-loved facility for
"The decision to re-allocate the $10 million funding will ensure the Old Municipal Chambers doesn't continue to
deteriorate further and that the preservation of this building can go ahead at the same time as we continue to look at
repair and strengthening options for the Canterbury Provincial Chambers Buildings, another one of the city's special
buildings," he says.
The Old Municipal Chambers building is listed as a Group One Heritage item in the Christchurch City Plan. It was also
the first permanent, purpose-built building designed for the Municipal Council, which preceded Christchurch City
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